Villa Lavanda is a completely reconstructed villa above the Tuscan village of Bagni di Lucca - 35 minutes from the walled city of Lucca. The house - with its 13m pool, hot-tub, pizza ovens, bocce is surrounded by olive groves and fields of lavender and is furnished with antiques, contemporary, traditional & ethnic art and furnished - and used - by the owners as a principal residence. Daily housekeeping is included in the rental. There is a library of books, satellite TV and internet service, 2 phone lines, multiple music systems, a gourmet kitchen with all appliances. The house looks out over Tuscan hill-towns, protected chestnut forests and the Serchio valley. It is 5 minutes - by car - from the town ---- which has shops of all types, supermarkets, and an emergency medical service.
After many years of searching,we bought the property - with the house as a ruin - and spent two years undertaking a complete renovation. because this is a home to our family, we have continued to upgrade and update both the interior and mechanical features. As we split our time between the US and Italy, the villa is our home and is not furnished as a rental property. It contains a portion of our contemporary & ethnic art collection, antiques and carpets, as well as large library,music, DVD and CD collection.
The villa has a special sense of peace and privacy with an ideal climate and environment. The grounds are extensively planted with terraces of lavender and rosemary, while the courtyards have pots of azaleas, gardenias, lemons and camellia. The quality of both the air and water is extraordinary, and in the warm months, the days are hot and sunny, while nights are generally cool and comfortable. (Bagni di Lucca first became famous in the 18th C as the favored Summer spa resort for British and Russian nobility because of the cooler, more comfortable nights.) Besides the decor, the villa equipped to provide every convenience from wireless internet service in most areas; telephone, fax, printer/scanner and laptops are provided. Laundry has 2 washing machines and dryer; up-to-date heating and electrical systems (you can use multiple appliances simultaneously); a gym, Satellite TV and multiple CD players & iPod connections. . The owners both cook and the (two) kitchens are fully equipped, with microwave, food processors, espresso machine, toasters, coffee-makers, 6-burner stoves etc The large 13m x 6m, mosaic-tiled pool is equipped with a salinator purification system, while the large - 8 person - hot - tub is enclosed in its own, separate, completely private, enclosed courtyard. There are board games, a grass bocce field, and ping-pong table. The Italian/Scottish housekeeper comes in daily and is a remarkable resource for getting familiar with the attractions of the area. The house is only 28 Km from the extraordinary walled town of Lucca with its surrounding vineyards, olive orchards, classic gardens and villas; while the Cinque Terre, Florence, Carrara & the fashionable seaside resort of Forte di Marmi are all easily accessible.
The house offers a unique sense of privacy and quiet both outside - and in. The panoramic views from both the house and grounds are unique. In particular, the giant window in the living room - which is kept open all Summer - and which looks out and over hill-towns and the Garfagnana valley opens up the living room to the views. Views from the pool terrace are even larger. There are multiple seating/eating/living areas in the house and grounds, so guests can always find a private spot to read or relax. No traffic disturbs the tranquility - and the lavender terraces perfume the grounds. A superb chef is available by arrangement as is an excellent masseuse.
The house is furnished as a family home with large, and eclectic, collections of contemporary and ethnic art; antique furniture and oriental rugs; a large library and collection of films (European and American)
We produce our own olive oil, honey and provide guests with the use of our large, organic, orto (vegetable garden) during Summer months.
Pizzas may be baked in the 18th century outdoor oven -- and eaten at one of several outdoor dining areas - and the layout of the house provides for 3 of the smaller bedrooms - along with a large living room and 2.5 bathrooms to be relatively separate from the main living areas...ideally suited for families with children as they can have their own living/play areas along with separate entrances to this area, courtyard (with ping-pong table) and gardens. While the village of Bagni di Lucca - with its stores and supermarkets - is a five minute drive away, the house is in a completely secure location with its electric gate, long driveway, burglar alarm and farmer neighbors who live close by ... but essentially invisible to guests.